NEW DELHI 18 OCTOBER 2020 SUNDAY `9 PAGES 24 facebook/TheMorningStandard twitter.com/TheMornStandard A Million Followers and a Win https://epaper.morningstandard.in The Purpose of Beauty PLUS: 12 PAGES MAGAZINE The Subtle Art of Idli EXCLUSIVE VOICES Prabhu Chawla TJS George K Jayakumar Pushpesh Pant Now Streaming in India GO-AHEAD Human trials of Sputnik vaccine in India cleared Indian firm says will give safe vaccine, it is currently undergoing Ph-3 trials in Russia EXPRESS NEWS SERVICE and its distribution in India. As part of the partnership, RDIF plans to supply 100 milRUSSIA’S Sputnik V has be- lion doses of the vaccine to come the fourth Covid-19 vac- Dr Reddy’s upon regulatory cine candidate in India to re- approval in India. ceive regulatory permission Sputnik V is currently unfor human trials. dergoing phase 3 clinical triThe vaccine’s promotor als in Russia and the proposed Russian Direct Investment number of subjects is 40,000. Fund and Dr Reddy’s Labora- Additionally, a phase 3 clinitories on Saturday announced cal trial of the vaccine comthat they have been granted menced in the UAE last approval from the Drug week. Control General of India to Commenting on Saturday’s conduct an adaptive phase 2 development, G V Prasad, coand 3 human clinical chairman and mantrial for the vaccine aging director, Dr in the country . Reddy’s said this was It will be a multia significant developc e n t r e a n d r a n - We are pleased to ment that allows domised controlled them to start the collaborate with the Indian study, which will inclinical trials, adding regulators and in clude safety and imthat his company munogenicity study addition to Indian was committed to clinical trial data, though details of the bringing in a safe we will provide number of volunand efficacious vacsafety and teers and sites incine to combat the immunogenicity volved in the trial pandemic. study from the have not been disKirill Dmitriev, Russian phase 3 clinical trial closed yet. CEO of the RDIF Earlier this month, said, “We are pleased Kirill Dmitriev, the Covid-19 subject to collaborate with CEO of RDIF expert committee of the Indian regulators the Central Drugs and in addition to InStandards Control Organisa- dian clinical trial data, we will tion had rejected a proposal provide safety and immunoby the two firms to directly genicity study from the Rusconduct phase 3 trial for the sian phase 3 clinical trial.” potential vaccine in India sayDmitriev added that this ing that the sample size for data would further strengthen early human trials for the vac- the clinical development of cine were “small”. Sputnik V vaccine in India. The regulator had then diIn August, the Sputnik V rected Dr Reddy’s to submit a vaccine developed by the revised proposal for phase 2 Gamaleya National Research and 3 trial in the country . Institute of Epidemiology and In September, Dr Reddy’s Microbiology was registered and RDIF had entered into a in Russia and had become the partnership to conduct clini- world’s first registered vaccal trials of Sputnik V vaccine cine against Covid-19. @ New Delhi EXPRESS READ NSA, Gangster Act to be invoked in Ballia case Lucknow: The accused involved in the killing of a 46-year-old man at a meeting attended by senior administration officials in Ballia will be charged under the National Security Act and the Gangster Act, police said. Eight people have been named accused in the case. While police is on the lookout for six people, including local BJP leader Dhirendra Pratap Singh, two have been arrested. Dhirendra had allegedly shot dead the victim, Jai Prakash, on Thursday as a fracas broke out at the meeting at Durjanpur village over allotment of ration shops. SHARE SIX VILLAGES GUARD UNESCO SITE In Maharashtra’s Satara, forest officials have roped in locals for better management of the site PAGE 5 Ravi Shankar S Vaidhyasubramaniam Shinie Antony Siddharth Dasgupta Flights of Fancy SADHGURU SPEAKS The Fashion Physicians Meals on Reels BJP wary of LJP eating into its Dalit vote base GA manifesto promises special status for Bihar M A N I S H A N A N D @ New Delhi THE Bharatiya Janata Party is becoming extra cautious to showcase the BJP-JD(U) unity in the face of the Lok Janshakti Party emerging as a potential spoiler for both the NDA constituents. The LJP campaign against incumbent chief minister Nitish Kumar is being seen in the BJP as a message for Dalits across the state to vote against the NDA. While the chief minister hopes to retain the support base among Mahadalits, a classification for a large number of Dalit sub-castes, the BJP is wary of the party’s new-found following among Dalits slipping away because of the high pitch campaign of the LJP . “Paswans among Dalits may consolidate in favour of the LJP along with a few more Dalit sub-castes. By fielding candidates against the JD(U), the LJP campaign is giving a panBihar message. In seats where the BJP is in contention, the LJP campaign may influence RJD’s chief ministerial face Tejashawi Yadav christened the Grand Alliance’s manifesto as ‘Pran Hamar’ (our resolve), which calls for a special status for Bihar and repealing the new farm laws. “(US President) Trump will not come to accord special status to Bihar, which was once promised by the Prime Minister,” he said, in an apparent reference to Modi’s ties with the US President. Supporters wave as Bihar Chief Minister and JD(U) president Nitish Kumar arrives in a helicopter to address a rally in Rohtas district on Saturday for the Assembly elections | PTI Dalits to vote for the Opposition alliance Mahagathbandhan,” a senior BJP functionary said. The Muslim-Yadav-Dalit consolidation against the NDA could boost the prospects of the Mahagathbandhan consisting of the RJD-Congress-Left, note political observers. The BJP has already gone into damage control, holding joint rallies with senior leaders of the JD(U) to ward off the perception on the ground of the saffron outfit entertaining a Plan-B in the post-poll scenario. The BJP is leaning on the appeal of the incumbent chief minister to transfer the Mahadalit vote base to the party’s candidates and ensure unity among workers of the NDA constituents. The LJP has also put up a few candidates against the BJP in the Bihar Assembly elections. Some BJP rebels are also in the fray in a number of constituencies. Besides the two large alliances, smaller parties in regions of their respective political influences are also STRAIGHT TALK ‘NITISH TO BE CM EVEN IF BJP IS LARGEST PARTY’ R A J E S H K U M A R T H A K U R @ Patna BIHAR deputy chief minister and senior BJP leader-cumparty strategist Sushil Kumar Modi said even if his party wins more seats than its alliance partner, the Janata Dal-United, Nitish Kumar will be the chief minister if the NDA were to return to power. “When Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Amit Shah and other NDA allies have already made it clear that Nitish Kumar will continue to be the NDA leader under any circumstances, such questions do not merit any attention,” he said in an interview. A recent election survey showed that the BJP would emerge as the single largest party after the elections. Modi said the NDA would repeat its performances of 2010 in which the alliance won 206 seats. He said the NDA’s performances on the ground would be rewarded by the people with a historic mandate. He predicted that the Lok janshakti Party would get reduced to the status of an independent party because of the “unwise move” to leave the NDA. FULL INTERVIEW ON P8 CJI SHOULD LOOK INTO JAGAN’S CHARGES: DAVE K A N U S A R D A @ New Delhi CHIEF Justice of India S A Bobde should not only look into Andhra Pradesh chief minister Jagan Mohan Reddy’s allegations against Justice N V Ramana but the judiciary should also take this opportunity to set up a mechanism to deal with questions raised against the personal conduct of judges, senior Supreme Court advocate Dushyant Dave said. “If one constitutional authority makes a formal complaint against another such authority, that too containing such serious charges, it must be looked into,” Dave said in an interview. The senior lawyer said Jagan’s letter offered the judiciary an opportunity to set up a system to question the personal conduct of judges of higher courts. This will “allay the apprehensions of all citizens that the judges are also under the law.” Calling Jagan’s letter to the CJI containing the allegations as the “most extraordinary,” Dave called for a change in the way judges of the higher judiciary are appointed. FULL INTERVIEW ON P7 Sharp rise in students opting for Tamil, Bengali in NEET S U M I S U K A N YA D U T TA @ New Delhi THERE was a significant drop in the number of candidates who registered for the National Eligibility-cum-Entrance Test (NEET) in some regional languages, but a significant increase in those writing the paper in Tamil and Bengali. The sharpest drop was seen in the number of students writing the test in Marathi and Odia this year. In 2020, only 822 students registered for the examination in the language, making it the least preferred. Last year, 31,490 students had opted for it. The test, whose results came out on Friday is held in 11 lan, guages, including English, Hindi, Urdu and eight regional languages. In fact, NEET (Undergraduate) is the only professional examination in which the test is conducted in many national languages. Gujarati was the preferred language for nearly 60,000 candidates while Marathi saw only 6,258 opting for it this time. The number of students with Kannada as the language of choice for the test also saw a reduction by nearly half. Tamil, Bengali and Assamese saw a jump. Bengali was the choice of 36,593 students in 2010 as against 4,750 in 2019 while the number of students opting for Tamil went up from 1,017 last year to 17,000. Overall, out of over 15 lakh students who had registered for the highly competitive entrance test, over 91% or 1,46,7672 preferred the test in English and Hindi with 79.08% opting for English. There was, however, a marginal rise in the number of students opting for Hindi compared to the last year. NEET 2019 LANGUAGE REGISTERED English 12,04,968 NEET 2020 PERCENTAGE OF CANDIDATES REGISTERED PERCENTAGE OF CANDIDATES 79.31 12,63,273 79.08 1,79,857 11.84 2,04,399 12.80 Assamese 1,796 0.12 5,328 0.33 Bengali 4,750 0.31 36,593 2.29 Gujarati 59,395 3.91 59,055 3.70 Kannada 2,305 0.15 1,005 0.06 Marathi 31,239 2.06 6,258 0.39 0.05 Hindi Odia 31,490 2.07 822 Tamil 1,017 0.07 17,101 1.07 Telugu 700 0.05 1,624 0.10 1,858 0.12 1,977 0.12 Urdu NEW BEGINNING Sex workers to press refresh, with a little help from police G AYAT H R I M A N I @ New Delhi IN a bid to help and motivate G B Road sex workers who have decided to leave the profession, the Delhi Police in association with the Delhi State Legal Services Authority will provide training in diya-making and other decorating skills. The Kamala Market Police station will set up a workspace and exhibition space to sell the diyas during the ongoing festival season. Deputy Commissioner of Police, Central, Sanjay Bhatia said around 200 sex workers A Larger Slice of Life have decided to leave the profession and G B Road and start a new life. Situated near Ajmeri Gate, G B Road is the largest red light area in Delhi that accommodates more than 30 brothels and over 2,000 sex workers. “At least 200 women caught in the flesh business have decided to leave the profession and start a new life with respect and dignity On their ap. proach, the Kamala Market Police along with the DSLSA has set up a workspace. In this work place, the DSLSA will help give them respect in the Learning to make diyas | EXPRESS Those who are forced into this business have the right to begin life afresh. We will provide legal aid to them to live a respectful life Gautam Manan, DSLSA secretary society while the police will help them live a life on an equal footing with others,” Bhatia said. The Kamala Market police are teaching the women to decorate diyas with colours and glitters. It will also buy the diyas made by them. “This will increase their self-confidence and make them self-dependent,” an official said. On the issue of sexual exploitation of women and minor girls, DCP Bhatia said anyone trying to force the women into sex work will not be spared. He also announced a prize money and reward for people informing the police about any kind of harassment, assault or physical violence against women or children. The identity of the witness will be kept anonymous. “Those who are forced into this business have the right to begin life afresh,” said Gautam Manan, secretary of the DSLSA. “The Delhi State Legal Services Authority will provide legal aid to these women to live a respectful life in the society. We have also set up a three-day camp to help and rescue such women.” testing their might, banking on the caste appeal of individual candidates. “There’s a clear scenario of multi-cornered contests on most of the constituencies and holding on to respective support bases is a clear challenge for the NDA constituents,” added the BJP functionary . RELATED REPORTS ON P8 Jet Airways gets buyer but likely to fly next year only A R S H A D K H A N @ New Delhi NEARLY one-and-a-half years after it shut shop and admitted under the Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code (IBC), Jet Airways finally found a buyer on Saturday. The consortium of Kalrock Capital and Murari Lal Jalan are the new owners of the airline. The details of the offer made by Jalan-Karlock to acquire the airline have not been disclosed. Analysts warned of many challenges for the new owners but even if everything goes right, it could still take up to eight months to get the Jet planes back in the skies. Jalan is a businessman with interest in diverse sectors ranging from real estate to mining. Besides India, he has investments in the United Arab Emirates, Russia and Uzbekistan. Kalrock Capital, founded by European entrepreneur Florian Fritsch, is a global firm operating in financial advisory and alternative asset management. Experts feel joblessness in the aviation sector due to the pandemic and poor financial health of aircraft lessors will help the new owners cut costs. For passengers, the resumption of Jet’s services will mean competitive fares and more options on international routes. Jet has lost most of its aircraft. To boot, its slots at major airports and traffic rights have been awarded to other carriers. The carrier owes more than `8,000 crore to a group of banks led by State Bank of India and YES Bank. Overall, Jet is facing claims of around `40,000 crore from various creditors including banks, suppliers and employees. Of this, the NCLT has admitted claims worth `15,525 crore. Industry estimates suggest the new owners will have to spend around `1,000 crore to acquire licence, get necessary manpower on board and lease new aircraft to start operations. At present, Jet has only six old aircraft in its kitty while it used to have 120 planes.
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